At Starbucks

I was standing in line at Starbucks this morning. I needed a small coffee before work, and I needed a change of surroundings. I wanted to watch the rain. The man in front of me, a hip, bearded gentleman clad in a feaux-leather/cordouroy New York and Co. baseball cap, a graphic-print Rugrats t-shirt, and ripped, faded designer dungarees, stood silently and listened to The Smiths on his iPhone 6 XL. The two girls behind me, both wearing long pledge shirts and (I’m assuming) no pants, were talking.

“OMG. Did you ever watch ‘All That’ when you were a kid?” one said.
“Yeah,” said the other.
“Wasn’t it the best?” the one asked.
“Yeah,” the other replied. “Like. I literally loved the Keenan and Kel show. It was, like, my jam when I was a kid,”
“Well, like, do you see that girl behind the counter?”
“The fat one?”
“Yes. Doesn’t she look like the fat girl from ‘All That? Like. The one that did the news?'”
“Oh my god she does! Like. I will literally never be able to look at her without thinking of ‘All That’ ever again. Like ever.”
“Yeah. She totally looks exactly like her.”

“You mean Lori Beth Denberg?” I asked.
“I–erm–who?” the one asked.
“Lori Beth Denberg. She read the news for ‘All That,'” I said.
“I don’t know who that is,” she replied, and they literally turned away from me and continued their conversation.

I, meanwhile, continued to wait in line. A friend of mine–an employee at Starbucks–tapped me on the shoulder. He told me we should catch up. He missed old times. I asked him to join me at a table. He said he would love to, but he was on his break and we should do it some time later when he had some free time. He walked away before I could say anything in response.

I got to the front of the line. I asked the woman at the counter (Lori Beth) about the dark roast, and she described it. It had a bold, rich flavor with notes of charcoaled wood, dark chocolate and coffee beans. Full taste. She offered me a sample. Coffee is a lot like beer or wine tasting. I took a sip. Yes. I could definitely taste the coffee. And the charcoaled wood. I told her I would take one. And I told her to leave room for milk and sugar.

I paid her, grabbed my coffee, and walked over to the milk and sugar table. I filled my cup to the brim with no-fat, gluten free organic milk. I then shook two packets of Sugar in the Raw (also gluten free) into the mixture. I grabbed a small straw, stirred, and sat at a table. I pulled my tablet out of my bag, scrolled through Facebook for a minute (a bad habit), and began to write. My old Italian professor sat next to me, scowling, grading papers. He chose not to notice me. I don’t blame him. The kids of my generation are, well, kids. And they’re assholes.

I blame Buzzfeed.

Published by

Jake

Marketing Strategist at The University of Alabama.

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